Mischevious Muffins

Another muffin recipe for you. This recipe is from the vitamix whole grains recipe booklet, which of course i have tweaked a little. My kids like these a lot & think they are chocolaty, though I told them there is no chocolate in them (& admitted to spinach & carrot). The last batch i did add 1/3 cup cocoa powder, they’re good, but oddly enough we all liked them better w/o it.

Whole Wheat Fruit & Veggie Muffins

1.5 cups wheat berries, milled into flour (i think this probably makes just under or at 2 cups flour? sorry, next time i’ll try to remember to measure it after it’s milled). I used my home-sprouted & dehydrated, but regular will work fine too.
1TBS flax seed

2tsp cinnamon
2tsp baking powder
1tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

1 very large handful baby spinach leaves, rinsed
3/4 cup raisins
Half a large banana or 1 small banana.
2TBS oil
(i used coconut. dont’ have to melt it b/c it’s going into the blender!)
2 eggs
1/2 cup sucanat
2 cups strawberries
(mine were frozen & it worked out to about 13 med/large strawberries. you could add pretty much any berry or fruit. original recipe calls for pinapple & oranges. i did half blueberries the first time too)
1 carrot, cut into rounds

Preheat oven to 375F, grease muffin pan.
Mill wheat & flaxseed, pour into large mixing bowl & add rest of the dry ingredients.

In wet blade vitamix container (blender) add the rest of the ingredients in the order listed, turn machine on @ variable speed #1, quickly move to #10 & switch on to HIGH. Run for about 30 seconds or more until smooth. Stir liquid mixture into the flour mixture & spoon into muffin pan.

Bake at 375 for 20-30 minutes. Makes just over 12 muffins.

Chatty Kathy

For those of you who haven’t noticed…. one of the short people in our house got an extra dose of the talkative gene from her mother. Often it’s pretty humorous, and generally I try not to judge…after all, she DOES come by it honestly. It’s in her blood I suppose (deep down I REALLY blame Aunt Christine. She was the chatty kathy in my family….i think. Hard to tell in a family with 4 females, 1 male). However, I will admit….it can get a bit exhausting. I try really hard not to tune her out, but on the other hand if I don’t…well…bad things start happening around 4pm. And most nights Ryan’s not home till 6pm to keep me in check take over listening to children.

When Asher was her age I used to strain my ears to listen to him sing and talk to himself at random times during the day. As a reward for my mommy-spy efforts I would get sweet little peeks into the heart & mind of my son. It’s been awhile since I’ve done that. I even flat out told Grace the other day that if she needs to ask me a question or ask for help she may not do it in song b/c when she’s singing I tune her out & won’t come help her (due to not knowing she’s calling for me). That sounds harsh doesn’t it?

I used to think Asher talked a lot. Mostly he asked questions a lot. I’ve noticed lately he doesn’t ask so much anymore. I can’t tell if it’s developmental, if he just doesn’t have much chance for getting a word in edge-wise, or if in the midst of all the listening I do, I’ve stopped ANSWERING. I try not to feel too bad there though, he does look up answers himself a lot now-days. That’s probably a good thing.

Anyhow, assuming the Lord gives us insight on training her to be a good conversationalist (i.e. listening as well as talking), I know her gregarious nature will be a blessing to many. She’s especially handy to have around before church starts. I’m terrible at striking up & maintaining conversations with strangers….ie. being social & friendly (particularly to visitors!). Grace has nearly none of this shy awkwardness and by wandering off to talk to random people she forces me to do so also.

This being said, I feel comforted when strangers make remarks that most people might take offense to. It is not at all uncommon for strangers to mention her verbosity, in the grocery store, at parks and especially when waiting in lines. Today was a great example. I had to pop into my doctor’s office to have blood drawn. The last time I did this it took perhaps 10 minutes total. Today there was a long line at the lab. As we sat in line for 20 minutes or more, Grace took it upon herself to entertain the elderly gentleman in line behind us. By this I mean she talked his ear off (granted, she also asked him conversational questions but he had trouble hearing her, so she gave up on questions early on) until I felt like he had enough (i.e. picked up a magazine & proceeded to ignore her). During this time he laughed & said things like, “she just feels like she needs to fill up the empty air with all those words doesn’t she?” and “So does she just go on like this all day?” lastly, with a sympathetic look, “this is why parenting is for the young. I wouldn’t last 1 hour with this one” (shortly after he picked up the aforementioned magazine).

Mostly I think it doesn’t bother me, because they make me feel sane. So I’m not imaging it? Surely if strangers feel comfortable commenting on the draining power of her constant chatter, it’s not just me? Surely I’m not exaggerating? Surely there IS a good reason I can no longer handle questions or stories or chats come 4:30 or 5?

Lord, please grant me strength, wisdom, patience, playfulness and endurance to know how to shepherd this sweet noisy ball of energy.

Money Saving May

Like most Americans, Jenn and I push our income to the edge (and occasionally over). In May, we are seeking, for at least this month, to try and make cutbacks. I’m sure some will stay for the long haul, and some are just for the month. Either way, here’s what May has in store:

  • Downgrade NetFlix subscription
  • Cancel HDTV, Cable, and DVR
  • Downgrade internet service
  • Revise current or get new auto insurance
  • No going out to eat
  • Downgrade cell phone to a smaller minute plan

If you have any other creative, expense cutting ideas, feel free to drop a comment.